RHP Shawn Kelley
Shawn Kelley is coming off of a season in which he saw himself pitch well enough that the Oakland Athletics acquired him in the waiver trade period just after the non-waiver trade deadline. Kelley became part of a loaded Athletics bullpen that also included the likes of Blake Treinen, Jeurys Familia, and Fernando Rodney down the stretch.
In 2018 between the Washington Nationals and A’s, Kelley logged 49.0 innings a 2.94 ERA, and a 50/9 K/9. He only got better after his move west as he logged 16.2 of his 49 innings and recorded a 2.16 ERA, 2.08 FIP, 18/6 K/BB, and 9.7 K/9.
Kelley primarily uses a two pitch mix of a fastball around 92 mph and a slider that drops in velocity to 82 mph. He can also tend to be a flyball pitcher which can always be scary since fly balls can result in home runs. If Kelley can keep the ball in the park again like last season, the Twins outfielders will have a group of strong defenders that should chase down just about anything else.
RHP Hunter Strickland
Hunter Strickland is a name that I had passed over earlier this offseason in some of my baseball ponderings when he was still on the San Francisco Giants roster. At that point, he was clearly a player that the Giants may look to move but I wasn’t very interested in the Twins trading for the right-handed reliever.
Since then he has been non-tendered and now becomes a much more interesting addition as a free agent. Strickland does have experience working as a closer but that would hopefully not be his role if the Twins were to sign him.
He has a good mix of pitches with a 96 mph fourseam fastball, a slider, and also throws the occasional changeup according to Brooks Baseball. 2018 was a bit rough for Stickland as he turned in a 3.97 ERA over 45.1 innnings. Strickland’s experience, ability to hold a K-rate above 20%, and over 10% swinging strike rate makes him at least an interesting signing as he would provide added depth for the Twins bullpen.